Getting an interview with Mad Men star Jon Hamm last evening at the Best Life magazine party at Michael's was akin to getting an audience with the Pope, as his flacks fussed and hovered, and nearly ruined our “We met Don Draper!” moment. Even so, we managed to sneak in a few questions. (Yes, we know we just ran a Jon Hamm Q&A a month ago, but he's Don Draper!)
What are you working on at the moment?
I’m working on relaxing. I just finished shooting season two last night, and I got on a red-eye and got here so now I’m working on absolutely nothing. We slept all day.
So you’re gonna be up all night?
Why not? I have nothing to do! It’s kind of great!
The show feels very authentic — what do you do to make it that way?
Fortunately in our show we don’t have a lot of signifiers. We don’t talk in the old-timey voice, and we don’t have that kind of thing so it’s easy to be as natural as you can. But most of the things we have on set are vintage — you know, the glasses are small and the drinks are old-timey so that really helps, and all of our clothes are vintage so that helps.
A lot of scenes end with Don Draper brooding and staring into space. What’s he thinking about?
Well, imagine being this guy, he’s lied about his entire life, so I think he’s got a lot to think about, basically, What’s my next minute? What’s my next hour? Who do I have to lie to next?
Is that what you’re thinking about?
I’m thinking about when’s lunch?
What’s going to happen with Rachel Menken and Draper?
Well, we just saw Rachel make another appearance this season, so I don’t know. It’s interesting because there are two levels: I love Maggie Siff as an actress and she’s a wonderful person, but she has her own career. She’s in a show that’s coming out called Sons of Anarchy so we unfortunately have lost our exclusive lease on her, but she will hopefully be coming back. It’s New York City. You run into the same people again and again.
Do you think they’re soul mates?
I do, in a weird way. I think that Don recognizes that and wishes he had it, and true to the overriding theme of our show, he misses out on it and is sad.
How is smoking herbal cigarettes?
Terrible. They taste like a mixture between pot and soap.